Commodities: Copper Leads Gains as Supplies Seen Falling to Multi-Year Lows


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Copper futures are holding just under $4.00 a pound this morning, picking up support from new analyst reports predicting the industrial metal is poised to hit new highs as demand exceeds future supplies by a wide margin.

Gold and silver also are higher while crude oil is down marginally.

Copper stockpiles reportedly may soon drop to an all-time low, putting upward pressure on prices, according to Michael Widmer of Bank of America Merrill Lynch in a new analyst report this morning. Demand for the industrial metal, meanwhile, is expected to outpace supply by 367,500 metric tons in 2011, analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News said, with the news service also finding that global exchange inventories have dropped 22 percent this year, the largest decline since 2004.

In company news, Capstone Mining Corp (CS.TO) restarted operations at its Cozamin mine in Mexico on Friday after a two-week shutdown due to a fatal accident, with the Canadian copper producer saying it was again cutting its 2010 production forecast because of the shutdown.

Crude oil for January delivery at present is edging lower again at 89.09 a barrel after earlier rebounding from a slide from just under $90 to $88.56 a barrel overnight. Also, Massey Energy ( MEE ) CEO Don Blankenship plans to retire at the end of the month, the coal miner reported late Friday.

At last look, precious metals were higher, with February Gold climbing $9.10 to 1413.30 an ounce while silver was holding at $29.75 an ounce, up $0.48.

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This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

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